Feeds

Ethernet — a networking protocol name for the ages

Michelson, Morley, and Metcalfe

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

Life’s highest calling

Twenty years on, after a decade at the 3Com helm and another as a paper-chewing tech columnist, Metcalfe has transformed himself yet again. Today, he’s a venture capitalist, a return to what he sees as life’s “highest calling.”

“Technological innovation is the source of all progress,” he says in a History Museum video beamed at his audience on Tuesday night. “It’s the highest calling. Democracy. Freedom. Prosperity. It all stems from technological innovation.”

His audience laughed. But Metcalfe is nothing but serious. His aim is to solve the world’s energy problems using the lessons of internet openness. “The world needs cheap and clean energy,” he says. “Too many of the people working on this problem are luddites and greens and Marxists and politicians and lawyers and other people who don’t understand the problem. But scientists and engineers and venture capitalists can solve the problem.

“Just like it took us thirty years to break the back of the communications monopolies to build the internet, we’re going to take the next thirty years to break the back of the energy monopolies and give the world cheap and clean energy.”

The laughter continued — here and there. But there were cheers as well. Metcalfe envisions an “Enernet” — a distributed system that serves up power much like YouTube serves up videos. He’s not quite sure how it will work. But he’s sure it’s not far away. Laugh if you like. But he deserves a cheer or two for Ethernet. Or at least its name. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud
Just as Jeff Bezos did to books and CDs, Amazon's rivals are now doing to it
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
The triumph of VVOL: Everyone's jumping into bed with VMware
'Bandwagon'? Yes, we're on it and so what, say big dogs
Carbon tax repeal won't see data centre operators cut prices
Rackspace says electricity isn't a major cost, Equinix promises 'no levy'
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.